Mystic River
  • Mystic River
  • Mystic River

Mystic River

3.8 22
Director: Clint Eastwood

Cast: Clint Eastwood, Sean Penn, Kevin Bacon, Tim Robbins


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Directed by Clint Eastwood, the mysterious drama Mystic River is based on the novel by Dennis Lehane and adapted by screenwriter Brian Helgeland. Set in an Irish neighborhood in Boston, Jimmy, Sean, and Dave are three childhood friends who are reunited after a brutal murder takes place. Reformed convict Jimmy Markum (Sean Penn) and his devoted wife AnnabethSee more details below


Directed by Clint Eastwood, the mysterious drama Mystic River is based on the novel by Dennis Lehane and adapted by screenwriter Brian Helgeland. Set in an Irish neighborhood in Boston, Jimmy, Sean, and Dave are three childhood friends who are reunited after a brutal murder takes place. Reformed convict Jimmy Markum (Sean Penn) and his devoted wife Annabeth (Laura Linney) find out that their teenage daughter Katie (Emmy Rossum) has been beaten and killed. Jimmy's old friend Sean Devine (Kevin Bacon) is the homicide detective assigned to the case, along with partner Whitey Powers (Laurence Fishburne). Jimmy also gets his relatives, the Savage brothers (Adam Nelson and Robert Wahlberg), to conduct an investigation of their own. Jimmy and Sean both start to suspect their old pal, Dave Boyle (Tim Robbins), who lives a quiet life with his wife Celeste (Marcia Gay Harden) but harbors some disturbing secrets. Clint Eastwood won a Golden Coach for Mystic River at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This gripping, suspenseful drama has some of the trappings of a whodunit, but Mystic River isn't a murder mystery -- it's a multilayered exploration of the human psyche that eschews easy explanations and pat answers. It's a story without readily definable heroes or villains: The principal characters are all flawed in one way or another, and they are so skillfully represented as to be recognizable and real. That's a tribute not only to the exemplary cast but also to director Clint Eastwood, whose sure-handed guidance keeps the actors sharply focused and prevents their emotionally charged performances from bubbling over with melodramatic excess. Brian Helgeland's masterful adaptation of Dennis Lehane's novel begins in the working-class Boston neighborhood where ex-con Jimmy Markum (Sean Penn) runs a corner grocery store. When his teenage daughter (Emmy Rossum) is found brutally murdered, Jimmy recruits his thuggish friends in an attempt to ferret out the killer and exact vengeance before homicide detective and childhood pal Sean Devine (Kevin Bacon) can apprehend the culprit. Suspicion falls on another old friend, Dave Boyle (Tim Robbins), an emotionally crippled handyman who was abused as a child, but both Jimmy and Sean are initially reluctant to believe their former classmate capable of murder. Mystic River isn't an easy film to digest, as it often evokes tremendous pain and seems at times to wallow in tragedy. It traffics in unspoken secrets, repressed guilt, and tribal loyalties. Penn and Robbins richly deserved the Oscars they won for their portrayals, and the little gold statuettes could have been awarded to the other cast members with equal justification. One of those rare movies that stands up to repeated viewings with undiminished effect, Mystic River deserves a place in every DVD home library.
All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
"The past is not dead; it is not even past," said William Faulkner, and that sentiment certainly applies to director Clint Eastwood's acclaimed intimate epic Mystic River. The film is a mournful and effective murder mystery, but beyond that, it is a wrenching character study and a trenchant exploration of the dark themes that have been prevalent in Eastwood's work throughout the later part of his directing career. Violence is rampant in Mystic River, and even when its consequences rip the souls from these characters, they do not learn from it. The film is a showcase for Sean Penn, playing Jimmy, an emotionally volatile ex-con who casts aside his efforts to live within the law when his beloved daughter is brutally murdered, and Tim Robbins' heartbreaking performance as Dave, a man broken by an insurmountable childhood trauma. These actors receive excellent support from Kevin Bacon and Laurence Fishburne as the homicide detectives stoically investigating the crime and Thomas Guiry as the daughter's secretive boyfriend. Laura Linney and especially Marcia Gay Harden, as Jimmy and Dave's wives, respectfully, do excellent work, but the script falls short in fleshing out their characters' motivations. Gracefully shot (by Tom Stern) and edited (by longtime Eastwood collaborator Joel Cox), the film suffers from a somewhat contrived and familiar story line, but still manages to build up considerable emotional weight. While Mystic River is too uneven to rank with Eastwood's best work, its strong performances and uncompromising bleakness make for a powerfully moving cinematic experience.
Entertainment Weekly - Lisa Schwarzbaum
Eastwood directs Mystic River with an invigorated grace and gravitas. This is a true American beauty of a movie, a tale of men and their bonds told by and for adults who value the old-fashioned Hollywood-studio notion of narrative.
Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert

To see strong acting like this is exhilarating. In a time of flashy directors who slice and dice their films in a dizzy editing rhythm, it is important to remember that films can look and listen and attentively sympathize with their characters.
Los Angeles Times - Kenneth Turan
A major American motion picture, an overpowering piece of work that involves some of the most basic human emotions: love, hate, fear, revenge, despair. Directed by Clint Eastwood with absolute confidence and remarkable control.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Closed Caption

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Sean Penn Jimmy Markum
Kevin Bacon Sean Devine
Tim Robbins Dave Boyle
Laurence Fishburne Whitey Powers
Marcia Gay Harden Celeste Boyle
Laura Linney Annabeth Markum
Kevin Chapman Val Savage
Tom Guiry Brendan Harris
Emmy Rossum Katie Markum
Spencer Treat Clark Silent Ray Harris
Andrew Mackin John O'Shea
Adam Nelson Nick Savage
Robert Wahlberg Kevin Savage
Jenny O'Hara Esther Harris
Cayden Boyd Michael Boyle
Jonathan Togo Pete
John Doman driver
Cameron Bowen young Dave Boyle
Jason Kelly young Jimmy Markum
Connor Paolo young Sean Devine
Bruce Page Jimmy's father
Miles Herter Sean's father
Tori Davis Lauren Devine
Shawn Fitzgibbon funeral director
Will Lyman FBI Agent Birden
Celine Du Tertre Nadine Markum
Ari Graynor Eve Pigeon
Zabeth Russell Diane Cestra
Joe Stapleton Drew Pigeon
Susan Willis Mrs. Prior
Jose Ramon Rosario Lieutenant Friel
Tom Kemp CSS tech
Charley Broderick medical examiner
Lonnie Farmer lab technician
Celeste Oliva Trooper Jenny Coughlin
Bates Wilder Loudmouth Cop
Douglas Bowen Flynn cop at barricade
Bill Thorpe Neighbor at Barricade
Matty Blake cop in park
Ken Cheeseman Dave's friend in bar
Scott Winters detective
Thomas Derrah headstone salesman
Jim Smith reporter
Patrick Shea handcuffed man
Duncan Putney solicitor in car
Ed O'Keefe communion priest
Dave Zee Garlson '75 police officer
Michael McGovern '75 reporter
Bill Richards helicopter pilot
Michael Peavey helicopter pilot
Eli Wallach liquor store owner [uncredited]
Lennie Niehaus Conductor

Technical Credits
Clint Eastwood Director,Score Composer,Producer
H. Barclay Aaris Special Effects
Bruce Berman Executive Producer
Boston Symphony Orchestra Score Composer
Henry Bumstead Production Designer
Stephen Campanelli Camera Operator
Katie Carroll Asst. Director
Joel Cox Editor
Jann K. Engel Set Decoration/Design
Richard C. Goddard Set Decoration/Design
Adrian H. Gorton Set Decoration/Design
Brian Helgeland Screenwriter
Patrick Hollenbeck Musical Arrangement
Deborah Hopper Costumes/Costume Designer
Judie G. Hoyt Producer
Phyllis Huffman Casting
Maryellen James Makeup
Melissa Cummins Lorenz Asst. Director
Robert Lorenz Asst. Director,Producer
Walt Martin Sound Mixer
Shawn Murphy Sound Mixer
David Norris Camera Operator
Bruce Ricker Consultant/advisor
Dominic V. Ruiz Special Effects
Tom Stern Cinematographer
Tanglewood Festival Chorus Score Composer
Jack Gammon Taylor Art Director
Wade Wilson Sound Editor

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Mystic River
1. Three Friends [3:14]
2. Driven Away [2:48]
3. A Boy's Ordeal [1:58]
4. Someone's Father [4:15]
5. One of These Days [2:14]
6. Covered in Blood [4:01]
7. Missing [4:53]
8. World of Hurt [4:32]
9. Collected Market [4:40]
10. My Daughter is There?!? [2:18]
11. Katie's Look [5:33]
12. Jimmy's Look; Lauren's Call [2:04]
13. Domestic Responsibilites [4:19]
14. Cyring For Katie [4:25]
15. Questioning Brendan [2:31]
16. Getting My Head Right [6:10]
17. Serious Look at Dave [5:07]
18. Beloved Daughter [2:42]
19. Celeste in a Hurry [2:53]
20. Speaking For Katie [2:17]
21. The Liquor Store [2:20]
22. Like Vampires [1:51]
23. From Friend to Liability [5:52]
24. Bloody Explanation [3:09]
25. Hits Keep on Coming [4:29]
26. What Celeste Thinks [5:38]
27. Questioning Brendan [3:39]
28. The 911 Call [2:33]
29. Drinks With Dave [2:47]
30. No More Secrets [3:56]
31. "I Want Him Dead!" [6:11]
32. We Bury Our Sins [1:55]
33. The Last Time I Saw Dave [2:34]
34. The King's Wife [5:37]
35. Passing Parade [4:26]
36. End Credits [2:36]

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